Friday Caterwaul: Florida Panthers Open Forum

Cats enjoy another day off before facing the Oilers

The Florida Panthers get another day off to bask in the good vibes created by the now 8-5-1 club’s shutout victory over the Carolina Hurricanes on Wednesday. Florida will face the Edmonton Oilers on Saturday night with leading scorer Matthew Tkachuk, and if they can sort out the financials, number one defenseman Aaron Ekblad back in the lineup. The Oilers got throttled 7-2 by the Hurricanes last night in Raleigh with Mister Svechnikov! collecting a hat trick.

Three of four of the Cats four Atlantic Division brethren that played last night took losses. Jack Eichel’s hat trick led to a 7-4 road win for the Vegas Golden Knights over the Buffalo Sabres, and 19.6 points in the bank for my fantasy team. The New York Rangers went into Detroit and destroyed the Red Wings by an 8-2 count. And the Ottawa Senators dropped a 4-3 overtime decision to the New Jersey Devils. The only winner was the Boston Bruins, who got a 31-save effort from Linus Ullmark to topple the struggling Calgary Flames, 3-1. The first place Bruins opened up a seven-point lead on the Panthers.

Tonight will see two Atlantic Division teams in action. The Toronto Maple Leafs will host the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Tampa Bay Lightning will visit the Washington Capitals.

In the AHL, the Charlotte Checkers (5-2-1-1) will pay a visit to the Atlantic Division-leading Providence Bruins.